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gerfan

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Some of us lucky rural Westerners benefit from WWAMI and WICHE programs, which means financial and admissions help at UW and other western schools. I am lucky enough to get to choose between OHSU, CU and UW. I would pay in-state tuition at OHSU ($43K) and CU (33K) and pay a reduced tuition at UW, but would have to return to my home state for three years. This isn't my preference at the moment, though I would not rule it out for the benefit of reduced tuition.

OHSU and CU curricula appeal. A bit less lecture, systems-based in the first year, more non-trads, and then freedom after graduation. UW's curriculum is more old-school, but the clinical training is said to be top-notch. If I don't return to my home state, the cost ends up being much more than either other option.

Location-wise, Portland appeals the most to me. But the cost is highest. Thoughts?
 

TheMightySmiter

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Some of us lucky rural Westerners benefit from WWAMI and WICHE programs, which means financial and admissions help at UW and other western schools. I am lucky enough to get to choose between OHSU, CU and UW. I would pay in-state tuition at OHSU ($43K) and CU (33K) and pay a reduced tuition at UW, but would have to return to my home state for three years. This isn't my preference at the moment, though I would not rule it out for the benefit of reduced tuition.

OHSU and CU curricula appeal. A bit less lecture, systems-based in the first year, more non-trads, and then freedom after graduation. UW's curriculum is more old-school, but the clinical training is said to be top-notch. If I don't return to my home state, the cost ends up being much more than either other option.

Location-wise, Portland appeals the most to me. But the cost is highest. Thoughts?

Choose UW or OHSU, because I am on CU's waitlist. :D Lol, jk, kind of. Honestly these schools are all very similar, so I'd say go to the location you prefer most. I think that if the cost difference is less than 100k over four years, you shouldn't let price determine where you want to go. Do you have any personal attachments to each place? Does the requirement to return to your home state for three years only apply to UW or to all three? You really can't go wrong with any of these schools, so it's difficult to give advice! I think I'd personally choose based on location.
 

lalalaaaaaa

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Sounds like OHSU is your best bet (Money aside). I think based on what you put out there, location is really the determining factor. The difference in cost doesn't seem that big to me, the schools are all very similar, and the UW situation sounds a bit too complicated.
 
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mybubbles627

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So far everyone who has posted is slightly biased because we are all from one of these states. Personally, I would choose UW. It is by far the best school of the three. CU and OHSU are roughly equal. Why don't you want to go to go back to your state? Three years honestly isn't that long especially if it lets you go to the best AND cheapest medical school.
 

kexy

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What would the reduced tuition at UW be? And the not-reduced tuition?
 

pdxjazz

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It would be hard to pass up the UW. I'm sure you are aware of their top 10 rankings in both research and primary care so no worries whichever direction you go. Strong community and alumni support, and lot's of regional opportunities if you decide to stay local for residency. One of the very best medical school's in the country, not just out here in the wild west.

However if you are a non-trad, and thinking primary care, OHSU would be a good fit.
 

synesthete

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UW hands down. WWAMI blows the other two schools out of the water and well worth a few years of practice in wyoming.
 

robertch8

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I didn't know there's a 3 year commitment as part of WWAMI...I knew that you'd have spend your 1st year at your home state but is the 3 year commitment thing just Wyoming or all of the WWAMI states?
 

bassvp

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It would be hard to pass up the UW. I'm sure you are aware of their top 10 rankings in both research and primary care so no worries whichever direction you go. Strong community and alumni support, and lot's of regional opportunities if you decide to stay local for residency. One of the very best medical school's in the country, not just out here in the wild west.

However if you are a non-trad, and thinking primary care, CU would be a good fit.

ftfy
 

NatrixCaelicola

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How does this three year commitment affect tuition? Because if you go to OHSU and the benefit is only getting instate tuition then you're only saving like 10,000 a year... Not that much
 

Barcu

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It sounds like you like the curriculum better at OHSU and CU, and you don't want to serve 3 years in your home state. Based on this, it seems like you want to eliminate UW.

Sure UW is the best school of the three, but you can receive "top notch" training at any of these schools. All of them are highly ranked and regarded.

You haven't given us the entire cost picture with UW yet, so maybe that would change things a bit.

You really can't go wrong with any of the schools, however.
 

music2doc

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Given this choice, as a Colorado resident, I'd choose UW. Just don't tell CU that.... UW is an AMAZING school. You'd be a fool to pass it up unless the other two are offering you a full-ride. All great schools, but UW opens doors. CU and OHSU simply don't shut any doors.
 

Shmemifly

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I would have a different take on this apparently.

How does WWAMI work if you want to do a fellowship? A few things to consider:

(a) Look into whether a fellowship constitutes breaking the contract, and think hard about how much you want to subspecialize. And of course you may not know right now.
(b) Consider your level of interest in academics -- even if you are allowed to do a fellowship, it might be really hard to find a position in the small niche you have developed interest in if you MUST return to one of the rural WWAMI states. Some rarer specialties like peds heme-onc simply aren't sustainable outside of a large patient population.
(c) What about the circumstance in which you find a partner during medical school? What if that person can't work or practice in your WWAMI home state? Challenging.

You are also only training at UW for your second year, so their legendary training is probably less significant to you -- your rotations will mostly be in WWAMI locations. And while your degree will come from UW, the prestige that makes people drool over UW would not matter much in the types of rural and primary-care oriented jobs you'd likely be finding during the 3 years of repayment.

Given that you have other great options in amazing places, with similar cost and no risk of repayment, i think that the prestige of UW is much less significant a factor than the inflexibility of a mandatory repayment. If you are leaning OHSU, do that. I'm a sucker for Colorado though.
 

gerfan

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To answer a few questions ... Not all WWAMI states require a three-year practice commitment ... Wyoming does (but only charges 12K a year!) ... On paper there is some flexibility in pursuing sub-specialties ... In reality, I think they are very flexible. I am currently interested in primary care anyway. ... I am married ... so the partner thing was a good point, but my husband is flexible in moving to Seattle and back.

This is my first time posting on SDN for thoughts/feedback and I have been pleasantly surprised. Thanks for helping me think through this!
 

synesthete

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there's tons of flexibility with fellowships and the deal to return home is not at all the end of the world, especially with the option to repay and forego the commitment if you have to. UW and all its clinical clerkships in the WWAMI region offer a combination of research potential and clinical independence/experience that no school in the country can hold a candle to. UW
 
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